About Social Security Disability Benefits

The Social Security Act established benefits (Social Security Disability Insurance) for totally and permanently disabled people regardless of cause. Disability does not have to be caused by employment, but it must result in the inability to do substantial work.



A claimant must have been unable to work for at least one (1) year, and the impairment must be permanent in that it is expected to continue for an indefinite time.


Workers’ Compensation Offsets

Social Security Disability payments can be offset by payments received by an injured worker under a workers' compensation award. The systems are coordinated to a point at which the worker cannot collect more money in benefits than he would otherwise have received if he were able to work. Of course, workers' compensation benefits are routinely paid to injured employees for disabilities that are considerably less than total and permanent. Therefore, many more people can receive workers' compensation benefits than qualify for Social Security disability benefits.



The Federal Government also provides for disabled people who do not meet the eligibility requirements for Social Security disability benefits because they have not contributed to the system for five (5) of the last ten (10) years before becoming disabled. Supplemental Security Income is available only to the totally and permanently disabled or the elderly who have little or no income and resources; Supplemental Security Income is a cash assistance program administered by the federal government.

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